Supreme Court hears Confederate license plates case

Daily News Article - March 30, 2015


1. a) What is the SCV?
b) What case did the U.S. Supreme Court hear last Monday involving the SCV?

2. a) On what grounds did the SCV sue the state of Texas? (What is SCV’s argument?) Be specific.
b) How did the state of Texas defend its position? Be specific.

3. a) What question did several justices ask?
b) What concern did Justice Kennedy present?

4. Why did Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito express skepticism about the state’s argument?

5. In a brief backing the SCV, several groups including the ACLU wrote, "In a free society, offensive speech should not just be tolerated, its regular presence should be celebrated as a symbol of democratic health — however odorous the products of a democracy may be.” What do you think?

6. a) How many states allow drivers to display plates with the Confederate flag?
b) What are the two opposing views of the Confederate battle flag?

7. This is an issue of whether an individual’s constitutional rights are being violated (not whether some are offended by others’ speech). But apart from the constitutional rights issue, should one side give in and try to understand the other’s point of view? If so, which one? Do you think the SCV is racist for wanting to honor their ancestors who fought for the Confederacy? Do you think either side is being unreasonable? Do you think your opinion would be different based on whether you are from the North or the South? or based on your race? Explain your answers.